Australia coach Justin Langer. @ Cricket Australia

Australia coach Justin Langer was visibly peeved on Thursday when a journalist prodded about Glenn Maxwell’s surprising omission from red-ball cricket. Maxwell, who last played a Test against Bangladesh in 2017, was reportedly asked to skip county cricket last year by Cricket Australia and was guaranteed a place in the Australian A squad that will tour India. (ALSO READ: Australia to tour India for 2 T20Is, 5 ODIs starting February 24)

Langer termed murmurs about Maxwell’s omission as “careless whispers” as he lashed out at the journalist and then immediately apologised.

“Are you certain that’s what happened? Did it happen? Well you’re telling me it did happen, I’m asking did it happen?” Langer told the journalist.

“No, I’ve got zero knowledge of that. Careless whispers, hey,” he added before apologising. “So sorry everyone for getting grumpy, I didn’t mean to get grumpy, but the truth is a beautiful thing.”

The dramatic sequence of events comes a day after Australia’s chairman of selectors Trevor Hohns, clarified that he was not sure “what the instruction was or who it came from” to Maxwell. (ALSO READ: Rishabh Pant has lot of technical problems: Farokh Engineer)

“Glenn is crystal clear from me, and the selectors, what he needs to do to get back in the Test team. He is crystal clear,” Langer said.

“He has shown he is brilliant around the group in white-ball cricket. There have been some reports about personality – it is literally false. It’s not true.

“He is crystal clear what he has to do, and that’s important that he knows that and that I know that as the coach and one of the selectors, and all the conjecture about it, that’s all part of the noise.”

Meanwhile, in a bid to reclaim a berth in the Test squad Maxwell will be playing for Lancashire in the upcoming county season in England. He will be turning up in all the three formats, which also holds him in good stead for a place in Australia’s ICC World Cup 2019 team.